Sunday, February 14, 2010

Financial wellness, organic apples, and a bit of Babyboomer

An exchange of ideas between two REIN investors:
[quote name='wgraham' date='Jan 29 2010, 10:01 AM' post='77619']
Tammy and I were at the farmers market the other day. What a great place! Fresh produce, organic meats, art and music everywhere. You just have to love the vibe of a place like this. If only there was one in Canmore or Banff (why don't we set one up - this is definitely another topic).

But then you get to the car and add it all up!! Wow, this wellness stuff ain't cheap!!! Tack on the gym membership, the gear for whatever sport(s) you choose, the green energy upgrade for your home, a hybrid car, the free trade coffee, acupuncture sessions and the raw dog food (because you don't want to leave the dog out of the "wellness" picture) and you have just created one very healthy albeit expensive lifestyle. Therein lies the dilemma....it is statistically proven that those with the highest income live the highest quality of life. I didn't say happiest....I said highest quality! It might not be fair but it is the truth.

I was at the Canmore Life Fest earlier this winter. Another great event! There were all of the people and businesses you would expect to be there, from yoga studios to organic product producers to chiropractors but there was a distinct lack of any financial wellness programs. If you can't afford this lifestyle in the first place isn't all of this other stuff a mute point? Don't get me wrong, I am not saying that if you don't make top dollar you can't be green, organic and healthy but you have to admit that having the financial means sure makes it a lot more attainable.

So I got to thinking about the entire "wellness" equation. Most people would agree that eating healthy, exercise, being environmentally conscious and living a balanced lifestyle constitute the 2010 version of wellness but where does a solid understanding of how money works and finance come into play? Why is it that most people neglect this side of the equation? They work out daily but don't figure out the more interesting side of financial planning. They eat healthy but fail to think
 about long term "retirement" (I think that this word will be completely re-defined with the first of the baby boomers "retiring" this year). They have great relationships with people but poor relationships with money. They do everything they can do avoid cancer but fail to see where there pocketbook is being corroded away.

One of our goals since our first Joint Venture was to help those who wanted to become financially well. To help them achieve the lifestyle that they desired!

So I would like to ask you this one simple question: When you think of "well being" does it include finances? If so, how does it play a part for you? And if not, why not? Please feel free to comment and share your thoughts and views!
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Wade Graham
Higher Ground Real Estate Investments Inc.
Silver REIN Member, Top 10 Player 2008 and SimpleWealth VIP Member
Canmore 403-621-3808
www.hgrei.com
See Exactly How We Invest Your Money Here!

[quote name='wgraham' post='77619' date='Jan 29 2010, 10:01 AM']So I got to thinking about the entire "wellness" equation. Most people would agree that eating healthy, exercise, being environmentally conscious and living a balanced lifestyle constitute the 2010 version of wellness but where does a solid understanding of how money works and finance come into play?[/quote]

Nice write up Wade. However, that list of eating healthy and ending with living a balanced lifestyle is a bit out of whack in my opinion. You see, that last thing, “a balanced lifestyle" constitutes most of the rest of your list plus of course your mental and financial well being.

One does not necessarily spend all one's money on organic mushrooms when the difference between them and conventional mushrooms is barely noticeable. Even wine, when you drink it balanced is healthy, as is beer whether it is organic or not. Too much of anything is no good either. You can drown in filtered water you know!

A balanced life means exercising sufficiently not excessively; eating healthy without going fanatic on organic food. Remember that Green Peace founder who said a while ago that it was better cutting down a Xmas tree rather than using an artificial one? You see it is not all black and white - there is always another unexpected angle.

As regards to the money of baby boomers. The press always exaggerates and demographers seem only to do straight line extrapolation. First of all, in terms of material assets, baby boomers are the wealthiest in history. North American and especially Canadian Baby Boomers have the best social benefits in history (don't laugh about CPP, AOS and universal healthcare). Guys like Harry S. Dent claim that Baby Boomers will start spending less after the age of 55, forget about it. Baby boomers will buy luxury condominiums and recreational properties. Baby boomers are likely to work to a much older age than ever before. For some this is out of necessity. For others it is because these Baby Boomers want the social interaction of a job. Baby Boomers live a lot longer than previous generation, their bodies are often not worn out at 50 and they have a lot more energy than previous generations when they reach 60.

So don't worry too much about your old folks or geezers such as myself. We'll do fine. In fact, you may have to compete with us in the work place, you young pup. And, I wouldn't count our work and life experience out - we can out do you any day of the week on the keyboard (not when racing up China Man's Peak though).

Godfried

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